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Connolly at NHL Draft

Friday, 06.25.2010 / 11:50 PM ET / News
By Tom Liodice
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Connolly at NHL Draft

LOS ANGELES -- NHL Draft tables at the annual National Hockey League Entry Draft are usually reserved for various front-office personnel and team scouts, but this year the Islanders had a very special guest on the Draft floor, Entourage star Kevin Connolly.

Connolly is a life-long Islanders fan and has made frequent trips to the Nassau Coliseum to support the team, this was his first time at an NHL Draft.

When the Entourage star heard that the Draft was going to be at the Staples Center, it wasn't a very hard decision whether to attend or not.

"I live out here and Im glad to come out here and be part of the Islander team," Connolly said.

Connolly even got to go up to the main stage first as Islanders General Manager announced to the hockey world the selection of first round pick, Nino Niederreiter, and he even got to announce the selection of the 30th overall draft pick, Brock Nelson.

"This was my first draft, and certainly my first time on stage with the Commisioner (Gary Bettman) and the owner (Charles Wang) and the GM (Garth Snow), so it was pretty intense. I felt like I was more nervous than Garth and Charles," Connolly joked.

Connolly got an inside look about what goes on down at the table, and its not as simple as what he thought it would be.

"I learned that these guys are wheeling and dealing and making moves right until the very end. They really are waiting to see who picks who, and who goes where and whats going on.

"It's not so cut and dry where you think where they know who they're going to pick from the beginning. They really do their research," Connolly said.

The famed actor was also impressed with the work Ken Morrow and his scouting staff put into a Draft Day.

"There are scouts, these guys are so good at what they do. These guys know. To sit there and think that you know anything more than Ken Morrow who's won four Stanley Cups and a Olympic Gold Medal, I think you'd be kidding yourself."

Connolly, casually known as "E" on Entourage, plays a manager representing an actor. So we turned the tables on him and asked him what would be his next step if he were representing Niederreiter.

"Well he's certainly is a good looking kid. He's nice and humble and I think you just gotta get him out there and more than anything, you just gotta say 'Let's win some games.' I think every Islander fan would agree with me," Connolly said. "I want to make him the best hockey player he could be."

Overall Connolly enjoyed the experience.

"It was great. But like I said, I'm a lifelong Islanders fan and I'd do anything to support the team."




J. Tavares 78 33 37 6 70
K. Okposo 79 22 42 -4 64
F. Nielsen 81 20 32 1 52
B. Nelson 81 26 14 -3 40
N. Leddy 81 5 35 -9 40
A. Lee 80 15 21 -2 36
J. Bailey 81 12 20 -7 32
C. Cizikas 80 8 21 4 29
R. Strome 71 8 20 -9 28
M. Grabovski 58 9 16 3 25
T. Greiss 23 11 4 .925 2.36
J. Halak 18 13 4 .919 2.30
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